Today is Monster Hunter: World release day! If you follow gaming news, you might have seen a lot of hype behind Monster Hunter: World, but if you don’t follow the Monster Hunter series specifically, you might be wandering what’s the big deal. Here are the reasons why this is a big launch not just for Monster Hunter fans, but for newcomers to the series.
A return to consoles
The Monster Hunter series got its start on consoles way back in 2004 when the first game in the series launched on PlayStation 2. Ever since then, the series has seen a string of releases that have either been exclusive to Japan or only found on handhelds. The only exceptions to this rule are Monster Hunter Tri, which was released on the Wii, and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, an enhanced version of Monster Hunter Tri that launched on the Wii U.
A few spinoffs for the series have released on home consoles, but in general, the mainline Monster Hunter series has been exclusive to handhelds for a number of years at this point. That all changes with Monster Hunter: World, which is bringing the series to modern consoles. With a launch on Xbox One and PS4, it gives core Monster Hunter fans the game many of them have been waiting for, while at the same making the series more accessible to those who have never played a Monster Hunter title before.
PC joins the party too
While Monster Hunter has a history with consoles, a mainline game has never been released for PC. There have been a few Monster Hunter spin-offs released for PC throughout the years, but none that have ever launched in the west. Monster Hunter: World is once again a trailblazer in that regard, as it’ll be the first mainline Monster Hunter game to ever release on PC.
That’s huge news, because it opens the series up to a new segment of gamers who previously never had access to the Monster Hunter series. Unfortunately, the PC version of Monster Hunter: World is going to be lagging behind the Xbox One and PS4 versions significantly. Capcom recently revealed that Monster Hunter: World won’t launch on PC until sometime in autumn, which means we won’t see if for at least six months, but more likely nine or ten.
No Switch, but reason to hope
Despite the fact that this is a big release for the Monster Hunter series, there’s one modern platform that’s missing out: the Nintendo Switch. Capcom blames the lack of Switch support on the fact that the decision about which platforms Monster Hunter: World would release on was made years before the Switch even existed, but it also seems that the Switch just isn’t powerful enough to run Monster Hunter: World on a level that Capcom wants.
However, even though Switch owners probably won’t get the chance to play Monster Hunter: World, there’s still plenty of reason to hope for the Monster Hunter series in general. Capcom has already revealed a Monster Hunter title for the Switch, dubbed Monster Hunter XX. That game is exclusive to Japan, but it’s good news for anyone who is hoping to see more Monster Hunter on the Switch in the future.
Monster Hunter: World is big not just because it’s a new Monster Hunter game (though that’s certainly part of it), but also because it seems like a fresh start with a series that has, in the past, been inconvenient to follow as it jumps between platforms and grapples with regional exclusivity. Are you playing Monster Hunter: World this weekend? Head down to the comment section and let us know!